rutabaga's Profile

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Carversville store... was this a fluke?

Was eager to try it under Max Hansen. Great spot, gorgeous, tasteful planters, good-looking stuff, but... my red quinoa salad was so undercooked, it was like eating a container of wet poppy seeds. Another salad was way over-salted. Is it generally better than that? Please say yes; I want to like it.

Jul 15, 2013
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Much-needed vegetarian, good-vibe Nelli Rae's kitchen in Revere

Been there a couple more times... very clean, wholesome, refreshing food. GF and paleo friendly offerings. It's a feel-good place (although one could be "bad" there too and overdo it on the good baked goods and good coffee).

May 30, 2013
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Much-needed vegetarian, good-vibe Nelli Rae's kitchen in Revere

They just opened yesterday and they're running a limited menu right now, but it's adorable, the coffee's good, strong, and organic. They have smoothies, soup (curried carrot apple today), baked goods (some GF), fresh fruit salad, a nice organic kale salad, and if you look on their fb page you'll see wonderful pictures of great-looking wholesome food to come. It's the kind of place that'll be a comfortable hang-out spot with books, games, and great people. Changing art exhibits on the serenely-colorful walls by local artists. Good bread. Stay tuned. It's on 611 in Revere, just past that deli that's on the right... it's in a cute old house on the left, where Country Town (I think that was the name) used to be.

May 09, 2013
rutabaga in Philadelphia
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Looking for best pho in Philadelphia

I like Vietnam Cafe, but unfortunately they seem to have eliminated tripe from their pho as of late. It's still good...

Dec 26, 2012
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Scubadoo97, I don't know if you were talking to me or to Mother of four just now, but as for me, I enjoyed the meal. Everything I wrote was only because M.o.f. wanted to know details of what I DIDN"T like about it. Overall, it was a good meal.

Mar 01, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Another picky little thing I forgot: if you wear dark pants/skirt, you get a black napkin. If you wear light-colored pants, you get a white napkin. It's so you don't have ugly napkin lint. Nice idea, but really silly to me. Those napkins don't shed lint. I rubbed my black napkin on the white tablecloth (sneakily), and nothing. So it's just for show. A little pretentious, maybe?

Feb 29, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Well okay, Mother of four- since you asked: we went to Derek's the night after Darwin's, so it was difficult not to notice that Darwin's was better. I do realize that it's not fair to judge by a one-time visit of just two people. Now that the disclaimers are out of the way: 1) nice space but some ugly wall elements 2) gumbo excellent but a little over-salted 3) never got rolls... finally asked and got some (right before dessert)- they were lovely and very rich (would've put a damper on my appetite if I'd had it before dinner, small though they are-- they're like cheese-enhanced mini brioche) 4) my haricots vert were undercooked 5) I had one of the "simple grills" (was in a simple mood after the wonderful flights of fancy the night before) and the salmon was fine, but the chimichurri was robbed by 90 % of its liveliness by too much cooking temp. 6) I made the mistake of ordering the "smores" for dessert. I thought it'd be fun and would be a grown-up version. Not. Although all the components were house-made and it was nicely presented, it was painfully, painfully sweet. It was every bit as sweet as a hershey bar and a campfire marshmallow inside a couple Honey Maid grahams. Kid stuff. I was very happy with our wine and the service was fine. Could've done without the frequent schmoozing forays of the man himself, but whatever. All in all it was good, but not great. Oh- almost forgot. One of the desserts was lavender-honey-poached pear with goat cheese ice cream and salted caramel-black pepper sauce. I would've had that, but I'd had THE IDENTICAL dessert the night before at Darwin's. I commented on it to the server and she said that someone who used to work at Derek's was now at Darwin's. Now I feel all nitpicky, but you asked.

Feb 29, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

I just want to thank you folks. We had good food with your help. I really loved Darwin's. WOW is your tap water bad. Other than that, it was great to be there. The weather was perfect, which didn't hurt, and Marie Selby Gardens was a highlight. Okay, it's not food related, but I had to say it.
Derek's was good but if I wanted to nit pick, I could (but I don't). Thanks again.

Feb 28, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Thanks. I feel prepared, thanks to you all.

Feb 19, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Oh, one more question for you helpful people: how do people dress down there for dinner? Dress casual? Casual casual? Tank tops and shorts? I usually go with nice-but-comfortable, but if everyone else is in jeans and t shirts, I don't want to feel overdressed.

Feb 19, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Oh, Darwin's looks really good! Got a reservation for Thursday. Do we need LUNCH reservations at all? My husband want to go to Yoder's and I want to go to The Savory Street. Still checking out the other restaurants you just mentioned, Veggo and Mother of four......

Feb 18, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Thanks everyone so far. I have a res at Derek's and one at Ophelia's so far. Will check out Darwin's and the Savory Cafe. Geez, I spent HOURS looking on here at posts yesterday, and following links-- I love this site. What about recs for a good Cuban place to try? Not looking for anything fancy. We love hole-in-the-wall joints with good food too.

Feb 18, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Siesta Key/Sarasota late Feb- need reservations much ahead?

Looking forward to being down there (from PA) next week, the 21-27. It's our anniversary and we'd like to have some really nice food. Is there still time to reserve? Do I need to? Do it ASAP? I'm still researching, but from reading you nice chowish people there, I'm looking at Ophelia's, Javier's, Derek's, Pho Cali, Yoder's (I guess), and am open to suggestions. We like all kinds of food but hate stuffy/pretentious. Not that keen on lots of heavy, rich stuff either. Thanks for any help!

Feb 17, 2012
rutabaga in Florida

Good bbq in Dublin (!!!)

Okay, I guess it's in Landsdale. BTW, the owner of Dancing Pig was a KCBS judge at some point. He was telling me about the criteria for rib judging there.

Nov 23, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Good bbq in Dublin (!!!)

Guess I'll have to try Smoke Daddy's-- so many of you talking about it. Where is it?

Nov 23, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Good bbq in Dublin (!!!)

Ooh, I'll have to try the wings. I agree about their stuff not needing sauce. It's so flavorful already.
Tried their "pit beef" and it was just roast beef- not too exciting. They had a nice, kicky horseradish mayo though (from a jar-- why don't they make their own? It's so easy and probably less expensive). Anyway, they're very nice folks and I look forward to the collards they're going to have soon!

Nov 21, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Good bbq in Dublin (!!!)

Oh, and I forgot to say that the second time I went (Saturday night near closing time (8)), all they had left was chorizo and ribs, so I got ribs. Oh, man. I got a half rack of each kind. One was their house kind with a dry rub and finished "with a light mop", and the other was salt and pepper.

I've never enjoyed ribs so much. I took them home and kept saying "wow".

I'll look for them on fb, teddybare. Eager to hear what others think of the place (you'll love it).

Nov 07, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Good bbq in Dublin (!!!)

In the shopping strip attached to the Shop 'n' bag is a new bbq place called Dancing Pig and it's Really, Really Good. They've got new restaurant syndrome in that they haven't got it all running smoothly yet, but who cares? The food is that good. It's the real deal. I've been there twice in two days (better not keep THAT up). The first time I got a smoked brisket sandwich (6.95- nice size, on a potato roll) and there was no sauce on it (didn't need it) but they offered me a choice of a cider vinegar-black pepper sauce or a Kansas City style (hope I'm not screwing this up) one which is a little sweet and dark with molasses, I think? The sides were way better than the bbq place in Doylestown, and a lot less expensive. The owners are a nice couple and I want all of you in the vicinity to go there and support good food in Dublin, which the town so desperately needs! Atmosphere is basic but pleasant. Only about five or six tables.

Nov 05, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Anybody out there tried The Vine and Fig in Doylestown?

I agree it's not that great. He uses good ingredients and doesn't know how to combine them so there's balance. There's an overabundance of rich, creamy, mild flavors with no spice or acidity to balance them. In short, another amateurish operation with nice touches here and there.

Oct 23, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Saigon2 Hatfield

Hmmm.... we just tried it for the first time, too. Our experience was okay but not as wonderful as yours. I had grilled squid on rice vermicelli. The squid was nice and tender, but I really think the "grilled" flavor was liquid smoke, or liquid smoke-enhanced. We also had some summer rolls (nice and fresh but not that flavorful), some spring rolls with a too-thick-and-hard layer of fried vermicelli on the outside, and some fried rice (okay). I'd try it again, but in our experience the Vietnamese place in Telford is so much more flavorful and "real".

Oct 14, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Where to find Concord Grapes -Upper Bux/Montco

Tabora farm above Chalfont has them, too.

Oct 06, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Where can I find pawpaws in upper bucks county?

Yup- I've since learned that pawpaws grow all over the place around Bowman's Hill (at least-- maybe lots of other places), but that the short season is passed. Next year!!!
Thanks.

Oct 01, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Where can I find pawpaws in upper bucks county?

I really want to try them. I did an internet search and see someone will have them at the Wrightstown farmers market, but I work Saturdays. Are there any wild? Any leads welcome.

Sep 29, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Best "cheap" gin?

Agree on both counts!

Aug 09, 2011
rutabaga in Spirits

Dam Good Cafe - Perkasie

Um, yes.

Aug 03, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Kingsport/Johnson City - anything new within the last year

Babylon Mediterranean restaurant in Johnson City has wonderfully fresh, homemade, wholesome, chowish food. They have a perfect hand with spices, IMO.

Jun 10, 2011
rutabaga in Kentucky & Tennessee

Are any farmer's-market vendors selling ramps?

I just got an email about this week's Doylestown farmers' mkt and they said there'd be ramps this Saturday (and radishes, peas, arugula, mesclun, strawbs, and I forget what else).

Meanwhile, there's something growing up the road from me that's in the onion family and I have no idea what it is. It looks just like a daylily. It's good. I showed it to a botanist friend who's into wild edibles too, and he didn't know. Does this ring a bell with anyone?

May 26, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Where's your "regular" spot?

A Country Place in Perkasie. NOT special, but it's nearby and cheap, and if you order carefully it's not bad. You can get a strip steak dinner with two sides for ten dollars. Salmon dinner with two sides is $7.95. Cheesesteaks are like $2.50.

Jan 12, 2011
rutabaga in Philadelphia

looking for local butcher who will cut up my own venision

If you're in central bucks, Haring Brothers. Just north of Doylestown.

Dec 05, 2010
rutabaga in Philadelphia

Good bakeries in the burbs?

Tabora has good crumb cake- it's a coffee cake with a crumb topping. I like it too much. It's rich- prob. has sour cream in it. It's round and sort of right in front of you when you walk in, a little to the left.
I've had decent crumb cake from Whole Foods, too.

Nov 03, 2010
rutabaga in Philadelphia